We’ve all heard it before growing up, whether from our parents or eye doctor in Bloomington Indiana: Too much computer or video games are bad for you! We also try to limit our screen time for children to help with our eye health. But how about with adults?
It’s difficult to not stare at the screen all day long. After all, we’ve got work to do and we want to destress from watching television, playing games, or scrolling down social media. But that might beg you to ask the question: How much screen time is too much?
Let’s take a closer look:
The Average Screen Time for Adults
Before the pandemic, the average screen time for adults in the USA was about 11 hours daily. But since pandemic and lockdowns, the average time has gone up to a shocking 19 hours a day.
You might not think you reach 19 hours a day, and if you wonder how much screen time you have, you can always take a look at your computer or phone, which sends you weekly screen time reports.
How Much is Too Much?
There are clear guidelines on the recommended amount of screen time for children, but what about for adults?
There’s no magic numbers for us adults but there is clear evidence that too much screen time can negatively harm our health. For example, one study found that those who spent over six hours a day on their screens had a higher risk of depression. Another study showed that limiting social media use to half an hour a day resulted in an improvement in well-being.
These are some of the negative effects when you have too much screen time:
- Poor sleep quality and insomnia due to the light from screens signaling the brain to stay awake.
- Eye strain and headaches because you spend too much time looking at screens, causing discomfort and fatigue in the eyes, along with dimmed vision. This may cause vision issues and lead to searching for affordable glasses near me from clinics like Dr. Tavel Family Eye Care.
- Addictive behaviors because of excessive social media usage, which can interfere with everyday life.
- Body pain, particularly around the neck, shoulders, and back due to staying in one posture for hours on end.
- Changes in cognition, which can happen in children and adults.
- Reduced physical activity levels, which leads to a sedentary lifestyle and heightened risk of obesity or other physical health issues.
Reducing Screen Time
Experts say that adults must limit to screen time outside work to two hours a day or less. Any time beyond those two hours are better spent on physical activities. Understandably, this is difficult to do at first, but you can take gradual steps to lessen your screen time appropriately, from turning off notifications to setting a timer!
Wrapping It Up
Now that you know the dangers of too much screen time, make sure you take proper measures to lessen it for your health.